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Erplex'd and troubled at his bad success

The Tempter stood, nor had what to reply, Discover'd in his fraud, thrown from his hope So oft, and the persuasive rhetoric That sleek’d his tongue, and won so much on Eve, 5 So little here, nay loft; but Eve was Eve, This far his over-match, who self-deceiv'd And rash, before-hand had no better weigh'd The strength he was to cope with, or his own : But as a man who had been matchless held



7. This far his over-match, who 'He had made some trials of his

self-deceiv'd &c.) An usual strength, but had not sufficiently construction in Milton, This far an confider'd it before-hand; he had over-match for him, who self-deceiv'd weigh’d it, but should have weigh'd and rash, before band had no better it better ; if he had been fully apweigh'd &c. Neither is this incon- pris'd whom he was contending sistent, as Mr. Thyer conceives it with, he would have 'ceased from to be, with what Satan had de- the contention, clared in book II. 131.

10. But as a man &c] It is the

method of Homer to illustrate and Have found him, view'd him, adorn the same subject with sevetafted him, but find

ral similitudes, as the reader may Far other labor to be undergone see particularly in the second book Gr.

of the Iliad before the catalogue of



In cunning over-reach'd where least he thought,
To salve his credit, and for very spite,
Still will be tempting him who foils him still,
And never cease, though to his shame the more ;
Or as a swarm of flies in vintage time,

About the wine-press where sweet must is pour’d,
Beat off, returns as oft with humming sound;
Or surging waves against a solid rock,


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ships and warriors: and our author image which not only fills and here follows his example, and pre- fatisfies the imagination, but also sents us, as 1 may say, with a string perfectly expresses both the unof fimilitudes together. This fe- mov'd stedfastness of our Saviour, cundity and variety of the two and the frustrated bafled attempts poets can never be sufficiently ad- of Satan. mired: but Milton, I think, has 15. Or as a warm of flies in"

a the advantage in this respect, that vintage time, &c] The comin Homer the lowest comparison is parison is very just, and also in the fometimes the last, whereas here in manner of Homer. Iliad. XV1.641. Milton they rise in my opinion,

"Ood and improve one upon another.

αιει σερι νεκρον όμιλεον, ως

οτε μυϊαι The first has too much fameness

Σταθμω ενα βρομεωσι περιγλαγεας with the subject it would illustrate,

κατα πελλας and gives us no new ideas. The

Ωρη εν ειαρινη, οτε σε γλαγος α

ałyeca second is low, but it is the lowness

DEVEL. of Homer, and at the same time is

The third is free Illi vero assidue circa mortuum from the defects of the other two, versabantur, ut quum muscæ and rises up to Milton's usual dig- In caula susurrant lacte plenas nity and majesty. Mr. Thyer, who ad mulētras has partly inade the same observa- Tempore in verno, quando lac tions with me, says that Milton,

vala rigat. as if conscious of the defects of the

Iliad. XVII. 570. two foregoing comparisons, rifes up

here to his usual sublimity, and Και οι μυιης θαρσα: ενα σηθεσσιν presents to the reader's mind an

very natural.




Though all to shivers dash'd, th' assault renew,
Vain batt'ry, and in froth or bubbles end;
So Satan, whom repulse upon repulse
Met ever, and to shameful silence brought,
Yet gives not o'er though defp'rate of success,
And his vain importunity pursues.
He brought our Saviour to the western side

25 Of that high mountain, whence he might behold


far in my

Ητε και εργομενη μαλα σερ χροζof the fixth book of his Paradife ανδρομεσιο,

Loft, where the rebel Angels thunΙσχαναα δακεειν.

der-struck by the Messiah are comEt ei muscæ audaciam pectori. pared to a herd of goats or timorous bus immifit,

flock together throng'd. The obserQuæ licet abacia crebro à cor- opinion from being verified by the

vation is just, but very pore humano,

passage produc’d. Fortin.

No image of Appetit mordere.

terror or consternation could be too This fimile is very much in the low for that exhausted fpiritless fame taste with one in the second condition, in which those vanIliad of Homer, where he com- quifh'd Angels mult at that inftant pares the Greek army to warms be supposed to be, and that abject of flies buzzing about the shepherds timorousness imputed to them, ina milk pail in the spring, and seems stead of lessening the dignity of liable to the same objection which the description rather adds to it, is made to that, of being too low by exciting in the reader's mind for the grandeur of the subject. It a greater idea of the tremendous muft howeyer be allow'd, chat no- majetty of the Son of God. This thing could better express the teaz. comparison of the flies now before ing ceaseless importunity of the us would have answer'd his purTempter than this does. Mr. Pope pose much better, Thyer. in his note on this passage of Ho. I cannot entirely agree with

my mer observes that Milton, who was ingenious friend; for Mr. Pope is a clofe imitator of him, has often co- discoursing there of low images, pied him in these humble comparisons, which are preceded by others of a and instances those lines in the end lofty strain, and on tha: account


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Another plain, long but in breadth not wide,
Wash'd by the southern sea, and on the north
To equal length back'd with a ridge of hills,
That screen'd the fruits of th' earth and seats of men
From cold Septentrion blasts, thence in the midst
Divided by a river, of whose banks
On each side an imperial city stood,
With tow'rs and temples proudly elevate
On sev’n fmal} hills, with palaces adorn’d, 35
Porches and theatres, baths, aqueducts,
Statues and trophies, and triumphal arcs,
Gardens and groves presented to his eyes,
Above the highth of mountains interpos'd :
By what strange parallax or optic skill
Of vision multiply'd through air, or glass



cumdedit arces.

this comparison, however suitable

35. On feu'n finall hills,] Virgil in other refpects, would not have Georg. II. 535. been fo proper for his purpose.

Septemque una fibi muro cir: 27. Another plain, &c] The tearned reader need not be inform’d, that the country here

40. By what strange parallax or meant is Italy, which indeed is optic skill &c] The learned long but not broad, and is wash'd have been very idly busy in by the Mediterranean on the south, triving the manner in which Satan and screen'd by the Alps on the showed to our Saviour all the kingnorth, and divided in the midst by doms of the world, the river Tiber.

pofe it was done by vifion ; others



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